chicken keep mosquito away

Are Chickens Our Best Bet In Keeping Misquotes Away?

July 21, 2016

The pesky mosquito is nearly impossible to avoid and now reports of the first possible Zika case from a mosquito bite in the continental United States gives us another layer of worry. However if you keep a chicken by your side you are less likely to be bitten, research has shown. Scientists have discovered that the malaria-carrying mosquitoes are put off by the smell of certain animal species, including chickens. They discovered that the Anopheles (uh-noph-o-lease) arabiensis species strongly preferred human to animal blood when feeding indoors and outdoors still had a taste for us but both inside and outside, they steered clear of chickens. Further tests showed that the mosquitoes avoided traps baited with compounds extracted from chicken feathers. Why would mosquitoes avoid feeding on, or even approaching, chickens? The researchers have a few theories. It might be that chicken blood is less appealing. It could also be that their feathers are better than wool or hair at keeping nosy bugs out. Not to mention chickens eat bugs, so perhaps the mosquitos have leaned to stay clear of our clucking friends.  These results could aid in further development of natural deterrents for mosquitos and the diseases they carry.

 

Read the Mental Floss article here

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